Breaking Sports

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

nhl- Get ready for the new NHL

from the Toronto Globe and Mail, Talks between the National Hockey League and the players' association have continued unabated for going on six weeks now, suggesting a new collective bargaining agreement is close at hand. As a demonstration of the gravity of the proceedings, neither side is saying much about the state of the negotiations. Even with the news blackout, however, there are some things we know; some that we think.
What we know: That the financial framework of a new deal is tentatively in place.
What we think: That the new deal will feature a league-wide salary cap, awarding the players 54 per cent of projected 2005-06 revenues of $1.7 billion. That figure - $1.7 billion — is down from the $2.1 billion the league generated in revenues the last time the league played a season, 2003-04 and represents an educated guess as to how much damage has actually been inflicted on the industry. In future years, the figure will be based on an audited figure of actual league revenues. If they go up, the players get more money; if they go down, they get less.
What we know: That the new system will feature both a payroll ceiling (a maximum that teams can spend) and a payroll floor (which every team must spend).
What we think: The ceiling will be established at $38 million, the floor at $22 million. Ideally, teams will want to stay a few million below the ceiling, in case injuries require them to go out and add a player or two during the season. It is unlikely that teams will get salary-cap exemptions to accommodate injured on...